Nearly 100 young people from across the North East, including Teesside, have been given hands-on experience of the latest hi-tech gadgets at an event showcasing the career opportunities in the region’s growing IT sector.
A Get Into IT afternoon, aimed at young people aged 13-plus, parents, teachers, and career advisers, has been held at the University of Sunderland.
The event, which was organised by Dynamo, an initiative aimed at expanding the North East’s economy by acting as a focal point for the region’s IT growth, featured:
• ’Tell us about IT’ interactive panel sessions with representatives from local IT businesses, universities and apprentice providers.
• A ‘Let’s Play with IT’ interactive playroom full of the latest technology that visitors were able to try
• The big screen programme ‘A Day in the Life of an IT’ highlighting stories from those working in IT, students and graduates
The attendees were able to experience the latest gadgets first-hand with the interactive playroom including mini drone cage fights, 3D printers, Virtual Reality headsets, augmented reality demonstrations, hi-tech games and a Build IT show.
There also were opportunities to network and chat to those working in the IT industry.
Charlie Hoult, Dynamo Chair, said: “The IT industry in the North East is a fast-growing, dynamic sector and it is essential we inspire a future generation of employees to keep pace with the burgeoning opportunities within this arena.
“There was a great buzz at the Get Into IT afternoon, where young people were able to learn about the huge variety of IT careers available in the North East in a fun and interactive environment, as well as gaining thorough insights into the industry from a range of IT professionals.”
Key messages that were highlighted at the event included:
• There are more than 2,000 vacancies within IT organisations in the region
• There are 32,000 people employed in IT in the North East
• IT apprenticeships are available within the region for 16-19-year-olds
• Jobs include gaming, coding, designing Government IT systems and more
• Nationally an estimated one million IT jobs will be created in the next ten years
Notable successes for Dynamo have included bidding and winning a tender to create a University Technical College in Newcastle; setting up the Dynamo Apprentice Hub; introducing SME tech firms to HMRC’s Government Digital Service; and helping Newcastle Gateshead Initiative with inward investment projects in the region.